David Ferris


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Has Moore's Law actually slowed down?

I think when people discuss Moore's Law slowing, they are usually discussing transistor density on a 2D board rather than transistor count.

The radius of a silicon atom is ~0.2nm, and transistors are currently at the 5nm scale commercially. Since transistors (with current designs) need to be made out of at least one silicon atom, there's only log2(5/0.2) = ~4 possible 1D-halvings, or ~16 2D-halvings left before we're hitting the floor of physical possibility. That's ignoring quantum effects which make it difficult to achieve reasonable commercial yield - which is the issue that companies are struggling with.